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Rome

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Best Time: Mid-March to June; Late October - November Read More

Ideal duration: 3 days

Nearest Airport: Rome Check Flights

""Roma Aeterna" (The Eternal City), "Caput Mundi" (Capital of the World), The City Of The Seven Hills"

Rome Tourism

The capital of Italy, Rome is a multifaceted metropolis steeped in a rich history of culture. Located on the central western side of the Italian peninsula, the city was founded on the shores of the river Tiber and has an independent country, the Vatican City, within it's borders. The city occupies a central position in Western history, as is populated with nearly as many historical and cultural attractions as it has people.¾

Historically, Rome could arguably be called the cradle of Western civilization. Capital of the Roman Kingdom, the Roman Republic and the Roman empire, the city has since become the 14th-most visited country in the world, and a UNESCO Heritage site. You can see the power and might of the erstwhile Roman empire in the ruins of the Colosseum, or revel in the architectural finery at Palatine Hill. The beauty of the artefacts at the Vatican museums are unparalleled and no one can leave Rome without seeing the Sistine Chapel! A visit to the Vatican itself would lay bare the deep Christian roots of the city, while the more adventurous sort have whatever is in the catacombs of San Calisto waiting for discovery! Italian is the most spoken language in the city. However, mass tourism has ensured that most tour guides and people in the service sectors are familiar with English.

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History of Rome

Legend says that Rome was built by the twin sons of Mars, Romulus and Remus. It became a centre of power first during the establishment of the Roman Republic, which started in 509BC and ended in 27 BC. Following that, Rome saw the establishment of the more famous Roman Empire, which expanded to cover most of the Western world and saw emperors like Nero and Caligula who are still known today. During the height of itês grandeur, the Roman empire comprised of over 50 modern day countries - majorly from Europe and Middle East. Christianity made its debut in Rome in the first century AD and took a firm hold after the first emperor Constantine converted. The current Pope is a converted figurehead formerly known as the Bishop of Rome before the Edict of Thessalonica. Currently, it is one of the most visited places in the world, besides being a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is also the seat of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation. It is a pilgrimage site for Christians the world over. Hosting a majorly Italian crowd, a minor 9.5% of itês population is of non-Italian heritage.

Nightlife in Rome

Rome has a vibrant nightlife, though it starts very late. If you're looking for the posh crowd, head on over to Piazza Navona and Via della Pace. San Lorenzo is the other end of the spectrum, with the crowd being dominated by university students and bars catering to college student budgets. Trastevere and Testaccio are also crowded with pubs, wine bars and risto-bars and offer a more mixed crowd than the previous two places.

Shopping in Rome

You will find shops lining the streets around the Spanish Steps, around Via Condetti. These include big brands and designers like Armani, Gucci and Prada. Campo de' Fiori and Piazza Navona is where you'll want to go for haute couture and up-and-coming designers. However, if you're looking for a bargain, Porto Portese Flea Market is the place to go. It's one of the largest flea markets in the country and certainly the largest in the city. Via del Babuino, Via Giulia, and Via del Governo Vecchio are all great for antiques.

Currency in Rome

The Euro is the most commonly used currency in the city. Most large stores will accept credit or debit cards (with American Express being an exception you will come across often), but smaller places will balk at paying for small amounts in anything but cash. Point to note - keep cash handy!

Exchanging Money in Rome

The best place to exchange currency is banks. However, Italian banks don't exchange currency unless you have an account with them. Thus, tourists have the option of withdrawing money from the many ATMs located all over the city. Point to note - Citibank doesn't have an ATM in Rome.

Daily Budget for Rome

Backpackers should budget between EUR 50 - 100 a day when travelling to Rome. This includes a bed in a dorm, a 3-day pass for public transport, food and sightseeing. More lavish travellers who would rather spend their nights at 3 or 4 star hotels, visit the Opera and eat out at high-end restaurants should be budgeting around EUR 300 and upwards a day.

Religion of Rome

Christianity is the main religion here, with the Roman Catholics dominating the city.

Rome Customs

Coffee drinking is a big part of Roman culture, and there are few rules you should keep in mind. Firstly, don't order milk-based coffees after noon and don't ask for coffee with your food. Most locals consider coffee a good enough breakfast, so unless your hotel specifically mentions it, don't expect a breakfast buffet either. Italians have pretty formal table manners, so please refrain from sharing food on your plate. If you are dining outside, note that it is considered rude for the waiter to bring you your bill at the end of the meal, so you have to ask for it. If service charge or servizio is added to the bill, you needn't leave a tip. If it isn't added and you are happy with the service, you may round up the bill to leave a tip. When visiting churches, remember that people use these historically and culturally significant buildings as their places of worship as well. Maintain clothing and behaviour that is appropriate to places of worship.

Language of Rome

If you're going to be in Rome, you should familiarise yourself with Italian, the most widely spoken and the official language of the city. While many people in the tourism sector are familiar with English, phrases like grazie (thank you), prego (welcome), per favore (please) and dov'e (where is..?) might help you during your stay!

Restaurants and Local Food in Rome

Food in Rome is heavily based on fresh ingredients sourced from the Roman Campagna. Fresh ingredients also includes fresh meat, sourced from the Testacchio rione, the city's slaughterhouse area. This is also the place where you are most likely to find the most authentic cuisine. In wines, Romans have a tradition of drinking whites over reds. Whites, sourced from the nearby Frascati and Castelli Romani areas are some of the best you'll get in the city. If you're looking to try specialities, don't forget to try the Pane di Genzano bread and the pecorino Romano cheeses. A couple of hidden gems that you should try are the Osteria Bonelli in Torpignattara, the Farine la Pizza in Via degli Aurunchi and La carbonara on Via Panisperna!
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How To Reach Rome

Rome has two international airports, and can also be reached via train or car.

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